Comments (37)

  • Intern in IB - Gen
Sep 1, 2020 - 3:33pm

Current Stern student going into IB here. I've enjoyed my time at the school so far, I think it gives you a lot of opportunities and going to college in NYC is a lot of fun. The community isn't as cutthroat as I thought it would be when I got there (and as WSO depicts it), although there is definitely a competitive atmosphere. As far as student life is concerned, it's very dependent on which organization you belong to, as the clubs give you access to a lot of recruiting opportunities and their members seem pretty tight-knit. That said, I didn't join any and still had a good time. I don't think I wish that I had gone to another school. Obviously, Harvard/Wharton will give you better OCR, so go there if they give you admission, but I have friends at other target schools (namely, Columbia), and their experiences with recruiting and student life were very similar to mine, so I guess there aren't too many differences. Lmk if you have other questions, happy to help

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
Sep 1, 2020 - 4:21pm

I went to Stern as well. Most of the competitions are internal, meaning you need to beat your peers in many cases. But there're plenty of resources and opportunities bc it's Stern & it's in New York, just start early and don't mess up w schoolwork. In terms of student life, you get the entire NYC to explore. I am not the type of very outgoing and social person but I feel comfortable in New York bc no one cares haha. On the flip side, if you are looking for traditional college town school life, then that's def not what Stern can offer, go to ivy, at least Columbia. 

  • Intern in IB - Gen
Sep 2, 2020 - 10:03am

Getting an IB job is competitive everywhere, but it's easier to land one at Stern than at most other schools. Every bank except a few boutiques (Centerview/Moelis) recruits at Stern and plenty of students end up in FO at a BB/EB/top MM. As long as you have a decent GPA (3.6/3.7+) and relevant internships, you'll be in a good spot. Clubs also help a lot with recruiting thanks to their own somewhat private networks

Sep 1, 2020 - 3:51pm

I didn't go to Stern. But, the location is pretty hard to beat. It's in a cool area of town. I like Columbia too, but it's so far uptown. NYU chicks are hot. 

You'll be close to a lot of good internships as well.

"If you always put limits on everything you do, physical or anything else, it will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them." - Bruce Lee

Sep 2, 2020 - 5:09am

You're right in the heart of the action. No cons.

"Full speed ahead, damn the torpedoes." -U.S. Navy General Farragut
  • Intern in CorpDev
Sep 2, 2020 - 9:54am

Stern junior here. Got an intern offer at a BB. OCR is great, and strong alumni network for networking. Being in the city allows you to do internships during the year which I found very helpful.
Cons are that among students it is very competitive. Stern grades on a curve, only top 25-30% in a class can get an A. Have had kids not want to answer basic questions bc of it. Clubs are quite cutthroat interview process by students is strange, cult like imo. But you don't need it. I didn't do any clubs until last year, and had a

  • Intern in AM - Equities
Sep 2, 2020 - 11:48am

yea this is very dependent on the person


personally for me i wouldn't go to stern cause i want to go to a campus with a huge greek life presence and a traditional college campus setting. Also its tough if u decide a couple of years in that u don't want to do finance cause there's nothing else to major in.

  • Intern in IB-M&A
Sep 2, 2020 - 11:51am

Stern sophomore here. A large % of Stern are total hardos that literally only care about IB/PE. If you are one of those then you will fit in well with the clubs, business frats. If not (like me) Make friends with the chiller stern crowd (not hard to find) and kids outside of Stern. Also Stern girls are very very subpar.

In terms of recruiting, if you work hard you'll get a good job for sure. But its not nearly as easy as people may thing. You have around 400 or so kids (because not everyone wants IB) gunning for a select number of spots. BB/EB is not close to a given, I know a ton of kids who were qualified and networked REALLY hard, had high gpas but didn't get a internship

  • Intern in IB - Gen
Sep 2, 2020 - 11:58am

As an upperclassman who went through recruiting, it's not as bad as it sounds. Only roughly 200 students have 3.7+ GPAs because of the curve (these are official school-published statistics), so only about 200 people are competitive for BBs/EBs. Not all apply as a significant part of this group wants consulting or tech, so you're left with 100 to 150 competitive students applying to IB jobs. The vast majority of these will get an IB offer, most of which will come from BB/EB/strong MM banks. It is competitive, but as long as you do well (i.e. have a 3.7+ GPA and a few relevant internships), recruiting will be fine for you. 

Stern also recruits well in other fields. Plenty of kids go into consulting - the really top ones get MBB (NYC or regional), the rest go into T2 shops like Deloitte, EY, ATK, or Accenture. I've also seen a few people go into tech, most of whom went to FAANG. Bottom line, Stern will get you what you want as long as you work for it. The key word here is "work". You'd be surprised by how many kids say they want something but don't actually put in the effort to get it.

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
Sep 2, 2020 - 6:31pm

Should point out thought that the Stern curve is brutal. I have smart friends there that got GPAs in the 3.0-3.3 range, when they probably would have gotten a 3.7 at some other lower targets, such as Brown or Ross. It's purposefully brutal to weed out a lot of smart kids even though they easily could have made it in IB at another school with less competition.

  • Associate 1 in IB-M&A
Sep 2, 2020 - 12:26pm

If you're interested in buy-side opportunities out of undergrad and a stronger alumni network, you'd be better served EDing to a target like HWCDYP, as I'm sure you can get into Stern regular decision anyways.

Sep 2, 2020 - 2:22pm

Graduated a while back but here's my list



+ Strong target for all areas of finance (except quant - major in math / cs at Courant if you want that) 

+ Solid buyside recruiting (maybe 5-15 kids go to buyside shops in a class) - changes from year to year

+ Lot of opportunity to try out areas you are interested in through school year internships 

+ Lot of flexibility to take all kinds of classes through NYU (drama, film, music, physics, cs, etc.)

+ Second to none study abroad opportunities (when world was traveling) - hallmark of NYU

+ NYC has something for whatever your interests are (improv theatre, comedy, coding groups, venture groups etc.) - easy to expand your network if you take advantage of this. There is a real opportunity to blaze your own path here but most students don't and stick withing their school bubbles and what others in their class are doing



-  Student body was too pre-professional and too focused on jobs (other schools that are similar are georgetown / wharton / harvard)

-  Class was very homogeneous in terms of race (mostly asian, indian or jewish in that order)

-  Grading Curve - not to bad if you put in the effort but lot of smart students in your grade

-  High cost (if you get a free ride somewhere else - probably worth taking it unless it's a place no one has heard of) 

-  Consulting recruiting was not as strong as other schools when i was there - seems like this has changed quite a bit as of recent

-  If you need to coddled a lot and need a community that comes from sharing a close intimate campus sprawled out over green pastures - then NYU is not really the place for you unless you go to an abroad site for a few semesters. That said there is every opportunity to create your own communities via clubs / groups based on your interests 

  • Associate 1 in IB-M&A
Sep 2, 2020 - 4:34pm

A lot of Stern undergrads here, so obviously it's biased, but for major cons, you only see a strength in BB and MM IB recruiting. Not as much of an EB presence in comparison. Buy-side and consulting recruiting is weak. Competition is fierce, versus going to a school like Yale and being one of 30 interested in finance. Pros: Very pre-professional and large (albeit cold) alumni network. Being in the city allows you to network easily. 

  • Analyst 3+ in IB-M&A
Sep 3, 2020 - 3:14am

As a response to your comment on EB presence, I went to Stern undergrad and graduated 2 years ago and went to an EB. I think I can agree with your point with the exception of Evercore. Evercore takes about 5-7 Stern kids for each class; I think in my year it was maybe 9 after 2 people lateraled from different banks. But I agree with you on their presence at other EBs; 1-2 PJT, 1-2 Moelis, 2-4 Greenhill, none at Centerview. 

As more of a reply to the initial post, I was not a hardo and did not fit in well at all with a lot of the student body; I found a good circle of close friends but often found it very irritating to wait for class to start only to hear people around me constantly living and breathing IB and anything finance. I was really lucky to receive an offer at a bank without being a member of one of the hyper-competitive finance clubs; recruiting for IB is extremely difficult if you are not in these circles. I had to network my ass off to get that interview and spent so much of my free time positioning myself to get a good internship (networking, doing a part time internship). A student at a different school probably has to do the same thing, but at Stern you are competing against at least 200 other people who are doing the exact same thing, and it can be very difficult to stand out. You will find yourself reaching out to a ton of Stern alumni in banking but if you're not a part of their former organization or haven't been referred by someone, only a select few will reply to your emails. Some banks only have analysts who come from the finance clubs, so they will only hire summer analysts who are part of those clubs; those banks include: most of the EBs, Barclays and CS (although this is happening a little less in recent years), MS and JPM.

I regret attending Stern and wish I had transferred out after my freshman year. A lot of my poor experience I blame on myself: I could have definitely have done a better job of not drinking the kool-aid and trying to find what I was personally interested in. However, I would've appreciated an experience that was closer to a traditional college one where my peers aren't spending every moment talking about an upcoming interview or giving each other network advice. I am really happy with where I am now (finished my second year at EB and about to start on the buyside doing tech stuff) but I think I would still be where I am today if I went to a similar school of the same caliber that was a little more traditional (and a little more affordable).

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
Sep 4, 2020 - 2:41pm

Agreed with a lot of these points, but I think Stern is still a good EB platform. When you account for class sizes it's really not that disproportionate - Greenhill is like 10/year, PJT maybe 20-30 total, so sending 1-2 kids to these places is not that unexpected, unless you're Wharton of course. No Centerview/Moelis does hinder recruiting (and not that strong at Lazard either, although I personally did get a superday [w/o converting]), but we still send kids to HL RX, Guggenheim, etc.

But again, generally agree with your points. A lot of IB recruiting is nepotistic/club dependent and alumni won't respond unless you're in Finance Society or something, and for the most part the people in these clubs are psycho hardos so I wouldn't recommend joining. I think the only BBs where everyone truly has a shot are Citi, BAML, Barclays (since they take so many). Also for IB, MS and DB barely recruit.

NYU as a whole however if spectacular. Find yourself some friends outside of Stern, date a model chick from Gallatin, go uptown every once in a while, techno raves in Bushwick, beach days on Long Island. If you can find people that don't live and breathe IB and are down for that shit you're gonna have a blast, and you can still get a good job if you put in the work.

Sep 3, 2020 - 3:38pm

Internal competition at NYU is really fierce (snaps fingers). Go to Stern if you want to learn how to stand on your own and dive into the city's "sink or swim" environment while "adulting" far earlier than you would at a standard college town with a campus + pretty lawns.

I went to Tandon for 2 years before covid hit and I decided to leave, so I don't have Stern-specific advice. In context, the banking events I went to had usually around 35 ish students mixed from Stern & CAS (business/econ), with only one or two math/business tech folks from Tandon. A few social events (b of a) were even larger, with (I'm guessing) 60ish students and nearly all Sternies. Take from that what you will. There are an infinite number of job + networking opportunities in the city, and the name really gets you into the first interview easily.

Just be careful with trusting people if you do any startups or startup competitions/accelerators to boost your resume/experience. For that, pair with tandon students because we are trustworthy nerds. Even so, the startup world at nyu is an absolute plus.

The unavoidable con is the cost. Only go if you know you can moderate your city expenses responsibly and not get into mountains of debt.

Most Helpful
  • NA in IB - Restr
Sep 3, 2020 - 7:53pm

Lots of accurate stuff by the posters.

Stern alum a few years out - I loved my time there.

A lot of good stuff from previous posters so I'll post other thoughts here:

1) high cost is definitely a consideration if you don't come from a upper middle class or higher family (and # of siblings etc.) - to enjoy the opportunity to the max it also helps if you have some money in your pocket from Mom and Dad to spend. You can still have an incredible time without it but I'm just saying that if you are someone whose financial situation is that you are fortunate enough to have that, then you should take that into account.
2) when I was there it certainly was an intense atmosphere where most people are focused on IB and PE recruiting... that said, things have changed a lot and tech and vc have definitely grown in importance at the school especially as tech companies have grown in size, prominence, and hiring needs. I would have called BS if you had told me when I was in school how much of my class would be working in tech. I don't see as many consultants as other schools however.
3) recruiting can seem stressful (and is) but I think largely it comes from students freaking themselves out. everyone I know ended up doing something that they enjoy even if their first job wasn't something they wanted. When you are in school (especially one as pre-professional as NYU), your career tends to be put on a pedestal. As someone who has been in the job force for a few years and has some perspective: you'll graduate into a bull market so your career will be fine but you will 110% be freaking out during OCR but that's only because everyone else will be so just have some perspective and those first few months won't suck. I know guys whose first job was RBC IBD, etc. and then they later to GS IBD a year later when a spot opened up. Your first job isn't a determinant of everything in life.
4) the stern curve sucks and is brutal. I guess flip side though is that it also means you can slack off and still get a 3.3-3.5. Although I wouldn't recommend that.
5) it is also definitely not the school you want if you want the traditional tailgating, quad experience etc. Not sure if Columbia (as someone else mentioned) is either however. it is actually very difficult to get the traditional tailgating/quad experience at an academically rigorous private school unless you go to somewhere like Stanford or Berkeley. However, NYU is certainly on the far end of the other side of the spectrum (no real sports presence, no quad/campus, etc.) If your understanding of college is what you see in movies with frathouses and college bars with cheap beer and banging hot, dumb chicks and that is what you want, then you will be disappointed. But again - I don't see how you would get that at any school comparable to Stern (Ivies, etc.)
6) student clubs are great. you can meet a lot of people this way. I'm a little shocked at some other posters who were "anti-club". I'm not the most extroverted person but I met a bunch of people through student clubs and fraternities (both social and professional) my first two years. Everyone is going to be in the exact same boat as you ("fish out of water in NYC"). People want to make connections and develop friendships and clubs are a great way to do that. That along with people you meet in dorms your first one or two years should create a pretty large circle of friends for you. That said, it is true that Stern doesn't have the same cohesion as maybe other schools with a more defined campus and boundary do. There were school trips I went on junior year where I met people I had never met before. 
7) the broader NYU network has actually been very helpful for me through my career. The school has been exponentially improving in terms of its competitiveness and quality/caliber of the students and alumni so by the time you graduate there will be some very senior alumni who can be helpful (+NYU MBA grads who love helping out all NYU guys). Make friends with upperclassmen when you get there as it's the people 2 years above you who will be the best network to get into firms (1st year analysts when you are recruiting for summer internships). They are also more fun because they are already well settled into the city and know where to go and what to do. I can't stress enough for me how much these relationships change the trajectory of your life. I have been on both sides of this and it's a win-win-win (the 3rd win is the firm) for everyone involved.
8) You'll need a fake ID but easy to get one within your first couple of weeks/month there. You will probably still go through 3 in your college career even if you are smart about it (sometimes asshole bouncers will take it and charge you $100 to get it back and you'll flick them off and call it a night)
9) lots of opportunity to intern while in the city as Stern doesn't have Friday classes for this reason. You can build up a solid resume and learn the industry/professional life this way with low consequences (can show up hungover as f*** to work, try and hide it from your boss while cursing your stupidity at getting into a beer chugging competition the night before at the bar down the street from your dorm - trust me, it's a lot more fun to learn this lesson when you are in college than in a real firm at a real job)
10) you'll get to really know and love the city. you won't even need to go above 14th or below houston your first year and you'll still have an amazing time but eventually you'll learn all the amazing parts of the city
11) The international study abroad program truly puts Stern over the edge. It is truly a life-changing experience and it's a semester that you'll remember for decades. You have a dozen+ options of where you want to go because NYU is actually a mini-global empire in reality and they are all incredible and offer different opportunities (as an example: london vs prague vs florence vs shanghai vs sydney - each offers very different experiences and attracts different types of people). Most students go for one semester but I know a few who essentially spent a year and half of their college career abroad. Very non-traditional but doable if that's what you want. You also spend junior year spring break in an all expense-paid (other than partying) trip in 1 of 3 international destinations with the rest of your stern class. Absolutely incredible experience. You'll also probably end up going on a senior year spring break with 100 stern students and take over an entire resort.
12) Staying in the dorms can be a little tough because NYU is pretty strict. Good amount of people end up moving off-campus in last 2 years.
13) Stern is certainly minority-heavy (lots of Asians) but I'd personally prefer that to going somewhere like Duke where not being white can restrict your ability to socialize. Maybe a little unnecessary to call out Duke specifically because it's probably true of any school with a heavy a frat presence but it's true.

I have to admit again though that coming from middle class or lower middle class background will probably affect your ability to enjoy NYU. I've unfortunately heard of students who felt left out because they were financially unable to participate in a lot of the activities I mentioned above (senior year spring break is not sponsored by the school.) But I'm not entirely sure that is too different from other Ivies, etc.

I think I'd say that I (and the majority of Stern students) took our time at Stern way too seriously. Looking back, you're young and have an incredible amount of free time and you are in the coolest city in the world. Being able to experience it while not working an 80-100 hr finance job is an incredible opportunity. 

The only schools I'd take over Stern looking back would be the HYPSW and probably solely for the network and signaling that it gives you for the rest of your career (although 90% of the people I've met from Yale - and maybe it's just 90% of the finance types - were insufferable) but if you offered me a Columbia, Dartmouth, Cornell, MIT etc. I certainly wouldn't take it (shitty campuses or not fun students. Brown does seem pretty chill though). YMMV

The only things I'd change about my college career would be: 1) I'd work out every day or twice a day. Looking back it is incredible how much free time I wasted when I was in college. Working 80+ hours a week really puts it all in perspective. 2) I'd get an apartment off-campus starting my sophomore year. A lot easier to throw parties and a lot more fun when you don't have NYU administration up your ass. 3) I'd probably try to live the life I wish I could have lived 22-25 if I wasn't working in banking: basically spend all day swiping on dating apps, meeting up girls at bars or brunch spots, checking out cool areas of NYC, hanging out with your friends, etc. And of course, balancing that with school work. 

Hope this was helpful. Am now going to get back to the hedge fund case study I was taking a break from lol

Sep 4, 2020 - 10:27am

For what it's worth on the recruiting front, I was a pretty mediocre student there, wasn't in any clubs, didn't network and still got ~15-20 interviews jr year from cold applying OCR + more from applying online/job portal. Especially found buy side recruiting to be easy since everyone was so focused on getting IB. If you're reasonably smart you can probably breeze through with a 3.5, but you do have to game the system a little (take a ton of music classes). 

Student life wise, agree what has been said. Find a group of chill people who don't live and breathe banking and you will probably have a good time. 

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